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Poster: simon c Date: Apr 16, 2004 1:47pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Step-by Step Instructions

Hey there,

If you're able to listen to streaming shows, it sounds like you have something on your computer that will play MP3s properly - which is good! You don't really give a lot of details with regard to your setup, so I'm not sure what's going wrong - where exactly are you having trouble, and what operating system and software are you using?

This previous thread:

http://www.archive.org/iathreads/post-view.php?id=14236

..dealt with some basic problems someone else was having, and some of my answers probably apply to your problem - if you find an MP3 show and then right click on an individual track and save it to your computer, you should be able to play it. After that, if you'd like to burn it, there are a few free CD burning programs you can use.

Hope this helps, post specifics if not!
s!

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Poster: kryspian Date: Apr 16, 2004 11:08pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Step-by Step Instructions

Thank you for your help Simon! Right clicking on individual tracks and choosing 'Save Link Target As', saves it to my computer. But when I try the Lossless file, it saves it to my computer as a Zip file in Acrobat. Then I cannot figure out how to unzip it. I do not have WinZip installed, is there another (free) program to download for unzipping?
Thanks for bearing with me.
-K

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Poster: Tyler Date: Apr 17, 2004 5:15am
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Step-by Step Instructions

it sounds like you are trying to download (right click and 'save as') the 'whole show' file. yes, that is a zip file with all the .shn files zipped up in it. If you want just one track, rigth click on the 'shn' column file in the meta-data track name area.

I don't understand, is there a reason winzip doesn't work? Winzip is a free program you can use for windows. www.winzip.com and install and you'll be set. let me know if that helps.

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Poster: dead trail Date: Apr 17, 2004 10:58am
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Step-by Step Instructions

I use the SHN software downloaded from e-tree and have had no problems to speak of. It's a lossless format and the sound quality is excellent. You might give SHN (Shorten) a try.

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Poster: J.B. Nicholson Date: Apr 17, 2004 11:51am
Forum: etree Subject: Try FLAC instead.

I recommend the FLAC codec instead of Shorten of Monkey's Audio because FLAC is free software. Years from now when proprietors lose interest in your preferred OS and hardware, FLAC is available to you in source code form so you can recompile the program or port it to your new OS and hardware. Also FLAC compresses excellently, contains its own verification data, and FLAC files can include interesting other information like cuesheets.

Check out http://flac.sourceforge.net/ for more information.

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Poster: rmuir Date: Apr 18, 2004 3:27am
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

shorten is available in source code form as well.

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Poster: J.B. Nicholson Date: Apr 18, 2004 10:26am
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

For more on what free software means and why it matters see http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html and then check out the Shorten license

Free software means more than just being able to see the source code. No permission is given to modify Shorten's source code which alone disqualifies it as being free software. Shorten cannot be distributed for a fee, and the licensors are attempting to restrict its use by commercial entities. These are other items in the Shorten license that further disqualify Shorten from being free software.

FLAC has none of these restrictions; FLAC is free software. According to http://flac.sourceforge.net/comparison.html FLAC is superior on a technical level too: FLAC has hardware support beyond Shorten's hardware support, FLAC is streamable, FLAC is seekable (only later versions of Shorten are seekable), and FLAC is more widely supported amongst various audio players.

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Poster: rmuir Date: Apr 18, 2004 1:33pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

yeah, i know about the gnu philosophy. you are missing the point. _for the purposes of the archive_, shorten is just as free as flac.

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Poster: J.B. Nicholson Date: Apr 18, 2004 1:35pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

I don't think I'm missing the point at all, I think I'm speaking directly to that point. On a purely practical level, Shorten can't compete (as that FLAC chart illustrates quite well) and as anyone with "out of date" proprietary software can attest to, bad things happen to one's archive of Shorten files when they discover too late that they can't improve Shorten to keep up with various changes in computer hardware and operating systems. Users also cannot distribute an improved version even if they illegally altered Shorten.

In case you think I'm overstating the case, I encourage you to consider 1960 and 1970 census data which was locked up in a proprietary compression format from Dualabs. A while ago people lost their ability to uncompress US Census data because they only had decompressors written in IBM assembler that ran on (what is now) obsolete hardware--an IBM 370/135. Data archivists who wanted to do research including this data had to cobble together incomplete copies of that census data from previous decompression runs and (if that was insufficient) eventually reverse-engineer the format to decompress it. Today, the work they did reverse engineering data formats could very well be illegal even though these data archivists were trying to access publicly owned data (this work remains undone to this day for this reason--even now, nobody has a complete uncompressed copy of the 1960 and 1970 US Census, but complete compressed copies remain available). All of this headache was incurred because the federal government didn't have the foresight to require that the contractors at Dualabs write free software (which the contractors probably would have done because they were getting paid the same money for the work regardless of the license on the final version of their work). Dualabs went out of business in the 1970s and we have our current situation.

How many times do we need to make the same mistake before we're willing to admit that free software and free software formats stand a better chance at being supported into the indeterminate future, and are thus more logical choices for archiving?

We have an opportunity here to losslessly translate Shorten data to FLAC and exclusively use FLAC for lossless compression. At the very least, archive.org could recommend use of FLAC above any other lossless compressor and tell submitters that archive.org's mission might require translation into a free software format for preservation purposes. Neither of these things is being done and archive.org could become a laughing stock because of it.

I encourage everyone to make use of FLAC, not non-free software compressors. As an added incentive, FLAC competes well on technical grounds (as that comparison chart I pointed to before illustrates). If the goal of the archive is to make data useful for patrons into the future, getting caught up in the proprietary format of the moment is a costly mistake.

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Poster: greenone Date: Apr 19, 2004 1:25pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

I'm not entirely sure what this discussion has to do with the original post (though it is a worthwhile one). All the guy's looking to do is to be able to get music onto his computer. To do that, at least with the files currently on the archive, he'd need BOTH a Shorten decompression program (like mkwACT) and a FLAC decompression program (like FLAC Frontend).

--Dave

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Poster: Jonathan Aizen Date: Apr 18, 2004 1:57pm
Forum: etree Subject: Re: Try FLAC instead.

For the purposes of the Archive, Flac is probably a wiser choice - because of it's open source nature, it's likely that converting from Flac in 100 years will be easier than from Shorten.